How To Open A Bank Account In Bulgaria

Bulgaria is a country with a vibrant culture, a rich history, and a nice warm welcome for those who choose to live there, so it’s no surprise that the cities have large expat communities. If you’re looking to relocate, then there are a number of things you’ll need to consider, including when it comes to … Read more

Daniel Montiglio, Varna

Who are you? My name is Daniel Montiglio, I’m originally from Chile and I have been living in Varna, Bulgaria for the last 15 years. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I left Chile in 2002 to work in the cruise industry I wanted to see the world and learn from new experiences.A … Read more

How To Apply For A Visa In Bulgaria

All those entering Bulgaria should have at least six months’ validity remaining on their passports, counted from the date they travel. Many nationalities will qualify for entry to Bulgaria without a visa for a period of up to 90 days, whilst for others it may only be up to 30 days, within each six-month period. … Read more

How To Find A Job In Bulgaria

If you have skills that are in demand in Bulgaria, then you will be welcome as a worker. Sofia in particular has a strong expat presence. This is because skilled Bulgarians tend to go abroad to seek wages commensurate with their skills, leaving a hole that is filled by skilled expats, who are content to … Read more

How To Keep Your Health Insurance Costs Low In Bulgaria

If you are an expat in Bulgaria and are concerned about the cost of your health insurance, you have a number of options. If you are working or have residence in the country, then signing up with the national health insurance scheme is compulsory.State health insurance is mandatory for everyone, including employed expats, and if … Read more

Complementary Therapies In Bulgaria And How To Access Them

Although conventional care in Bulgaria can be of variable quality, particularly outside the big cities, complementary therapies are flourishing in the country, with a growing number of holistic centres and spas.This is an ancient trend: Thracian communities grew up around the thermal springs. Several Roman emperors also noted the hot springs of the country and … Read more

How Does Cancer Care In Bulgaria Compare With The UK?

Cancer treatment is a priority in both Bulgaria and the UK, but there have been suggestions that cancer care in both countries lags behind that of other European nations. Macmillan Cancer Support, the UK’s main cancer charity, notes that survival rates are not as strong in the UK as elsewhere in Europe, and a country … Read more

How Much Do Health Procedures Cost In Bulgaria?

The cost of healthcare in Bulgaria will depend on the type of insurance that you have. If you are an expat and are signed up with the national health insurance system, then you will be covered for a range of care and treatment which will be free at the point of delivery, but if you … Read more

How To Look After Your Mental Health In Bulgaria

Mental health issues are of course challenging wherever you are, and Bulgaria is no exception. If you are an expat resident in the country, therefore, and concerned about your mental health, what levels of care might you expect, and how can you best safeguard your own mental state?Bulgaria has never had a separate law on … Read more

How To Register With The Health System In Bulgaria

It is critical for expats in Bulgaria to register with the state healthcare system, as medical costs here can be very high. In order for you to be eligible for public state health insurance, either your home country will need to have a reciprocal arrangement with Bulgaria or you will need to make national insurance … Read more

What Quality Of Healthcare Can You Expect In Bulgaria?

As an expat, the quality of healthcare that you will find in Bulgaria will depend on whether you are accessing the public sector care or if you have taken out private health insurance, and in addition, which region of the country you are based in.The country spends around 4.2% of its GDP on healthcare and … Read more

Caroline May, Vratsa

Who are you? My name is Caroline May. I’m 64 and retired. I used to be a special school teacher. Where, when and why did you move abroad? My partner, Danny (51), and I were living abroad for nearly three years before we came to Bulgaria.We lived in Ireland, Spain and France, then we realised … Read more

Martin Stephenson

Who are you? My name is Martin Stephenson and I am an English artist, author and teacher from Yorkshire. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved to Bulgaria 10 years ago to semi-retire, as I lost my sister to cancer and decided to live the dream instead of waiting for retirement.I had … Read more

What Banking Options Are Available For Expats In Bulgaria?

After the banking crisis in Balkans in the mid-1990s, a Banking Consolidation Company was set up in 1996 in order to restructure and consolidate Bulgaria’s banking sector.All state-owned banks went private in 2000, while smaller commercial banks were either taken over by larger Bulgarian corporations or bought out by new foreign banks. Commercial banks in … Read more

Daniel Roy, Sofia

Who are you? My name is Daniel Roy. I’m a freelance narrative video game writer from Montreal, Canada.These days I live in Sofia, Bulgaria with my partner Helene, who is also Canadian. Where, when and why did you move abroad? My first expatriation was to Shanghai in 2003. My partner Helene and I both wanted … Read more

How To Find The Right International School For Your Child In Sofia

Bulgaria (and the city of Sofia in particular) accommodates the influx of expat families from Western Europe and the US by providing a variety international schools. Curriculums on offer are from the United States, Britain and France. Bulgaria has seven International Baccalaureate (IB) World Schools, all of which are authorised to teach the IB Diploma; … Read more

How To Obtain Planning Permission In Bulgaria

At first glance, Bulgaria is a tempting place to buy a property to live in or as an investment. You can get a lot for your money and there are plenty of dilapidated, crumbling houses you can pick up for a low cost. However, before you change your job title to International Property Developer, you … Read more

Setting Up A Business In Bulgaria

Many people associate Bulgaria simply with fun in the sun. It’s not the first country that comes to mind when considering setting up a business abroad – and that’s a real shame. In the recent years, Bulgaria has become a sound choice for opening a business. Let’s have a look at some of the main … Read more

An Expat Guide To Energy Suppliers In Bulgaria

The Bulgarian electricity market is highly regulated and dominated by a few major players. Those companies have created a monopoly in the country but despite this, prices remain at a reasonable level. There is no real competition that would allow the consumers to choose their supplier as there is only one licensed electricity provider per … Read more

Renovating A Rural Property In Bulgaria

Moving to a new house comes with a lot of strain and pressure, more so if you have set out to turn an old dilapidated building into your dream home. Many people dream of revamping an old farmhouse and turning it into a beautiful home. In Bulgaria, not only is the cost of rural property … Read more

Bulgaria – Recommended Expat Blogs

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at Bulgaria and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there.Auntie Bulgaria In 2010, Claire and her partner bought a dilapidated village … Read more

George St Clare, Balchik

George, it's been a few years since we last caught up with you – where are you living now? Have to say it’s very nice to hear from you again and for you to follow up on our progress in Bulgaria 7 years on from our first interview!In fact, around 5 years ago, since we … Read more

Ten Reasons You Should Consider Bulgaria As Your Next Expat Home

Bulgaria is a Balkan country that has witnessed political instability, economic fluctuations and corruption ever since the first democratic election was held in 1990. Stability returned when the country joined the European Union in 2007, after which there has been an increase in its expat population. Many expats, especially from Western Europe, visit Bulgaria looking … Read more

Bulgaria – Recommended Social Media Accounts

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at Bulgaria and some of the social media accounts you should be following if you’re thinking of moving there.British Expats in Bulgaria Facebook Group Everything … Read more

Bulgaria – Recommended Blogs

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at Bulgaria and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there.Bulgarian village life Swapping the rat race for a more sedate … Read more

How Not To Offend The Locals In Bulgaria

Bulgaria is a haven of historically and architecturally significant sites. With a varied terrain ranging from the Black Sea to a mountainous interior, the country has always been a popular destination for tourists. Expats too find the Bulgarian lifestyle to be rich, diverse, and fulfilling. The local culture bears Ottoman, Persian, Greek and Slavic influences, … Read more

Just How Dangerous Is Life As An Expat In Bulgaria?

Life in Bulgaria comes with plenty of benefits such as a stable economy, good employment opportunities, a pleasant climate, natural beauty and a relaxed way of life. As a result, most major cities and towns in Bulgaria have significant expat communities. Bulgaria also has a reputation of being a peaceful country where wars have not … Read more

Expats Love Living In Bulgaria, Find Out Why!

There’s little not to like about living in Bulgaria. The climate is moderate and pleasant all year round. Natural wonders abound in the region and the Bulgarian landscape is decorated with numerous rivers, valleys, cave formations and lakes. The local population is friendly and welcoming, the cost of living is affordable, and the country’s economy … Read more

A Few Tips For Expats Driving In Bulgaria

Driving in Bulgaria can be a daunting experience for those unaccustomed to it. But expats can easily overcome this by paying attention to the road and sticking to the traffic rules. Expats can use their foreign driving licenses, provided they are still valid. However, it is also necessary to have an International Driving Permit. The … Read more

A Brief Guide To The Main Religious Beliefs In Bulgaria

For most people, Bulgaria isn’t the most well-known of countries. Needless to say, this is not because the country lacks natural beauty, history, culture, industry, or infrastructure. The Republic of Bulgaria, as it is officially known, is a thriving, modern, democratic country in south-eastern Europe, and if this is to be your home for a … Read more

5 Things You Should Do When Living In Bulgaria (And 1 You Definitely Shouldn’t)

Bulgaria’s rolling mountain ranges, spectacular beaches and historic towns attract a steady stream of visitors and expats. Bulgaria is a unique country with many benefits. Its proximity to many other countries allows for convenient travel. Bulgarian cuisine is delicious and healthy, and the people are often warm and generous. The country is often regarded as … Read more

Rebecca Richardson, Sofia

Who are you? Hello, my name is Rebecca Richardson and I’m a sales and marketing professional from the UK. Before moving to Bulgaria I have worked in Dubai, UAE and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. I love to travel and feel very fortunate that I’ve been able to combine my love of travel with my career. … Read more

Joanna Newman, Veliko Turnovo

Hi I am Joanna Newman. I was a wife, as well as a mother & nana, when I moved here but I am now single. Not sure who I am right now as I am re-evaluating this very question. I am though the face behind “The Secret Garden Tea Room” which raise money for charities … Read more

Bulgaria – Five Recommended Expat Blogs

Bulgaria seems to be growing in popularity both as a holiday destination and as an expat living location. We’ve spent some time looking for the best blogs for anyone who’s thinking of moving to Bulgaria and needs tips, practical advice or just an idea of what to expect. The Good Life Bulgaria With some beautiful … Read more

5 Things You Should Know Before Moving To Bulgaria

Expats move to Bulgaria for various reasons such as work or retirement. There are also those who make the move for the purpose of leisure, Bulgaria being a country with a beautiful natural habitat, seaside resorts and attractive cities. Other reasons include a more affordable cost of living and economically priced real estate in comparison … Read more

Using The Healthcare System In Bulgaria – A Short Guide For Expats

The Ministry of Health in Bulgaria takes care of the execution and supervision of the National Health Service and policy in the country. Healthcare in each of the administrative districts of Bulgaria is taken care of by Regional Health Centers. All residents are eligible to receive some amount of health insurance coverage. In addition, one … Read more

Should You Buy Or Build A House In Bulgaria?

Bulgaria is a great place to live in because it is rather centrally located on the continent, having shared borders with countries like Greece, Turkey and Romania. It is only a night train or bus ride away from Austria, Italy, Hungary, Croatia and Slovakia. The country itself is a land of beauty with its scenic … Read more

Where Are The Latest Expat Property Hotspots In Bulgaria?

Bulgaria is increasingly becoming a popular destination for permanent living, as seen by the statistics of the British Embassy in the country, which states that there are now approximately 3000 British expats residing in Bulgaria. More than 20 percent of these have taken up permanent residence in Veliko Tarnovo and Gabrovo. These regions draw expats … Read more

Eric Helms, Bratsigovo

Who are you? My name is Eric Helms and I am an American human rights professional working in the fields of Roma rights and human trafficking prevention. I was born and raised in Denver, Colorado and still consider it my home despite my endlessly itinerant lifestyle. I have a bachelor’s degree in International Business and … Read more

Doing Business in Bulgaria (With a Chainsaw)

I’d bought 8 houses in this village 80 minutes drive from city Sofia. The agent takes me to meet our new local security guy who will also be foreman of the five men who will clean up the houses & gardens. Mico. Huge, square, ugly & scary. Ex paratroop sergeant. Looks a real b*****d. Very … Read more

Life as an Expat in Kostenets, Bulgaria

by Gilly Lockhart So what is the pull towards rural Bulgaria for expats? Well, there are a variety of reasons, and probably the biggest is the ability to romance with the idea of running your own business in a beautiful rural idyllic spot, miles from the clamour and din of city life. When you have … Read more

Darrin Best, Albena

My name is Darrin Best and I am based near the Albena resort and Balchik town, in Bulgaria, about 35km from Varna airport. I moved in 2004.I just wanted to do something different and adventurous, something new. I faced many challenges during the move. Not only the language and the alphabet, which is in Cyrillic, … Read more

George St Clare, Balchik

My name is George St Clare and I currently live in Balchik on the Northern Black Sea Coast of Bulgaria. Prior to Bulgaria, I have worked in the computer field in the UK and Qatar, computers and real estate in Russia and real estate in Malta. In Bulgaria, I run three companies – GPS systems, … Read more

Rachel Gawith, Central Bulgaria

I am Rachel, a British girl, born in North West England. Studied medical biochemistry and then did a law degree and practiced as a lawyer in a high street firm for a couple of years before getting bored with the desk job and 9 till 5. Lived on a farm most of my life until … Read more